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Thread: best material for darkcloth?

  1. #11

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    Newbury, Vermont
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    892

    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    Love the t-shirt idea! ...and I'll definitely be saddling up that cow come Sunday!

  2. #12
    Lost mike rosenlof's Avatar
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    Mar 1998
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    Louisville, Colorado, USA
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    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    my darkcloth is some kind of medium weight cotton twill. one white, one black, sewn together. very little light gets through. no velcro, elastic, weights or other features, just a big cloth square.

  3. #13
    Jim Sidinger
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    May 2006
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    Denver Area, Colorado USA
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    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    I had been using one self-made of fairly heavy curtain blackout material but thought I'd go to a lighter nylon that would fold smaller & be lighter to carry. Big mistake for me!

    Shooting on the mostly windy High Plains, lighter nylon made for distractions. Adding weights to the bottom helped some but the material around the camera and my head was fluttering constantly with the wind. I have since gone back to the heavier blackout material. Who knew the weight & stiffness would be a net plus?

  4. #14

    Join Date
    May 2006
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    grand rapids
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    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    I use the 2 t shirt method and a diy Ultrabounce cloth with magnets for my 8x10.

  5. #15
    Drew Wiley
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    Sep 2008
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    SF Bay area, CA
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    13,883

    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    Weights plus wind equals risk of a broken groundglass or black eye. Velcro is smarter. T-shirts, denim, etc equals lint and heavy when wet. Guess you like spotting.

  6. #16
    moltogordo
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Prince George BC
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    85

    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    I have bought a couple of darkcloths - both black nylon on the heavy side, with elastics and such. They worked fine. Never tried gortex but I would think it would be super. However, I find a black fleece hoodie I have to be as good as a 'real' dark cloth.

    I'm a big guy (4 or 5x, depending on the article) so there's lots of material there.

    Perhaps the best system of all might be a prism viewfinder. Never used one on a 4x5, but I have one for my Mamiya C330 and it's really the cat's meow.

  7. #17

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    May 2015
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    SooooCal/LA USA
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    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    I was shooting yesterday using an old thin (rayon?) B&J cloth... There was a stiff breeze,and it kept wrapping around my face, but I discovered something interesting...

    Although not totally dark through the weave, I noticed A/ that the breeze blowing through it kept me cooler, and B/ I could see a little through it so I could be more aware of my surroundings around me... (Like that weird car over there with the guy checking me out...)

    Hmmm....

    Steve K

  8. #18
    Jim Sidinger
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Denver Area, Colorado USA
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    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    Quote Originally Posted by LabRat View Post
    ....through it so I could be more aware of my surroundings around me... (Like that weird car over there with the guy checking me out...)

    Hmmm....
    Everyone - step away from the 'Reply' button!

  9. #19

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
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    285

    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    I'm curious about the reasoning for the black plus White layer Or silver/grey layers.
    For reflecting heat away? Or something else?
    Learnt from experience?

    Quote Originally Posted by mike rosenlof View Post
    my darkcloth is some kind of medium weight cotton twill. one white, one black, sewn together. very little light gets through. no velcro, elastic, weights or other features, just a big cloth square.


    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Stage View Post
    I got a lightweight Nylon Taffeta Black/Silver from Outdoor Wilderness Fabrics.
    Works for me -- very well.
    QUOTE=Doremus Scudder;1250989]I prefer white Gore-Tex, lined with a black, non-slip material on the inside.

    Best,

    Doremus[/QUOTE]



    Quote Originally Posted by Liquid Artist View Post
    I have 2 pieces of curtain black out cloth sewn together.
    One Black, and one White.
    However I would have preferred a Neutral Gray fabric rather than white.

  10. #20

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    158

    Re: best material for darkcloth?

    My mother one time sewed a darkcloth for my father, but he was complaining about it fluttering in the wind.

    I remembered that curtains used to have these cords with lead beads sewed into the hems.



    My mother actually had some lengths of these and I was able to thread this cord through the seams on three sides. It makes the cloth relatively heavy, but it’s pretty nifty. Throw one side with a cord on top of the camera and it will stay there.

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